Maharaja Ranjit Singh statue to be installed in Pakistan gurdwara
Maharaja Ranjit Singh's statue will be installed on the premises of Gurudwara Darbar Sahib Kartarpur, as per media reports on Monday.
This statue of Maharaja Ranjit Singh was installed in the Shahi Fort of Lahore on the occasion of his 180th anniversary in June 2019, but after attacks by some extremists the statue was damaged.
According to media reports, the statue was attacked by extremists thrice in Lahore.
It reported that the statue weighing 2.5 to 3.50 kg was previously installed in front of Rani Jindan's mansion in the Shahi of Lahore on the occasion of his 180th anniversary in June 2019, but some extremists attacked the statue three times and broke it.
The statue was gifted by Sikh historian Bobby Singh Bansal, who is president of the UK SK Foundation. This bronze statue depicts Maharaja Ranjit Singh riding an Arabian horse named 'Kaif Bihar', The Express News reported.
This beautiful masterpiece was created under the supervision of Faqir Saifuddin, Director of Fakir Khana Museum, but in September 2020 and again in December of the same year, activists of an extremist religious group vandalized the statue. After the statue was repaired, it was reinstalled but then in August 2021, the statue was badly damaged for the third time.
The Walled City of Lahore Authority repaired the statue once again, but the authority was unable to decide on its re-installation in the Shahi Qila for the past two years, as the authority was afraid that the extremists might damage it again, now a statue of Maharaja Ranjit Singh has been decided to be installed near the darshan point at Gurdwara Darbarsahib Kartarpur.
According to the officials of Project Management Unit (PMU) Kartarpur, the statue of Maharaja Ranjit Singh has reached them and it is currently kept near the darshan point. How the statue will be installed will be decided in the next few weeks.
Apart from Sikh pilgrims from all over the world, including India, other tourists also come to visit Gurdwara Kartarpur Sahib. Maharaja Ranjit Singh conquered Lahore at the beginning of the 19th century.
According to Sikh traditions, he ruled Punjab for 40 years, and it is said that Maharaja Ranjit Singh damaged buildings of the Mughal era, it is also said that religious tolerance was promoted during his time. Many important ministers were Muslims.
Ranjit Singh, (born November 13, 1780, Budrukhan, or Gujranwala [now in Pakistan]--died June 27, 1839, Lahore [now in Pakistan]), founder and maharaja (1801-39) of the Sikh kingdom of Punjab.